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Discussion Starter #1
So, I am looking at getting a SUV to drive after my 1997 Toyota RAV4 has decided that retirement is an option.

There is a 2013 Compass with 12000 km on it that I can get for about $10k Canadian.

It says it is the Sport / North Edition.

From what I can see it seems like the basic basic version. Manual windows, stick shift (manual), rear drum brakes, FWD. The interior is pretty sparse without any bells and whistles.

The reason I need it is during the winter here our alleyway (which goes up) becomes a slip and slide. My RAV4 never had a problem ever and just trundled along fine. I am wondering if a FWD will fare much worse than my RAV4. Does anyone use this in the snow? How does it manage.

Also, how good is this for some off road work? Say dirt roads? Trails? I do a fair bit of hiking and the RAV always managed to get me to the trailhead. Wondering if this will manage. I see a lot of FWDs masquerading as SUV's these days.
 

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NO !!!

A huge step down from the RAV4

If you're going for anything newer you want AWD or 4x4 as well as automatic and not a CVT. Drum brakes are dinosaurs which also means no ABS so you don't have skid control either. You don't mention anything specific about your RAV4 powertrain. It doesn't matter on the price its a very bad move.

You can PM me if you want detail of other info.
 

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Well my RAV4 is ancient.. its a 97 model, which is first generation. It has bad power, a bad head gasket, leaks/burns oil, gives me 12mpg at the moment (I can literally watch the fuel gauge come down over the course of one trip), so anything is an upgrade at the moment. My budget is also quite limited and considering how little mileage is on this, I have been giving this some thought.

My RAV4 is the i4 - 1998cc which is decent. It also has drum brakes on the back end.

This one is the 2.4l i4. It doesn't have CVT either, its a manual. I am comfortable driving manual and automatic, so it doesnt really matter to me (I actually prefer manual a little).

Is this still a step down from a RAV4 17 years its senior?
 

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Well I would not go for a NON ABS system. Rotors front and back are a must have and also 4WD is a big plus even on these. I'd look for something else especially if you are on a budget. These vehicles of that era will cost you in many repairs without a doubt. So be clear on that. A new RAV4 or other would be a better choice.
 

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I never heard of ABS controlled drum brakes they have to be rotors. May be front only then. Don't know and have not use for that tech which is obsolete a decade ago at least. They're cheap and certain not any good for winters and wet weather. Brake drums will not work if it gets wet inside.
 

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There are a large number of vehicles with ABS and rear drum brakes on the road...I own 3 pick up trucks like that. Heck, I had a 2005 Tahoe like that with a computer operated traction control.

They do exist...

To answer the OP's query...the Compass won't be as roomy as the Rav4, but should be able to get most normal places. If you go off the paved road often, I would suggest looking for a 4X4 version of the Compass. They are agile little vehicles, and handle the snow and gravel roads very well. The FWD version is made mainly for paved roads.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you Stringplucker. I did go and check it out today, your comments were spot on. I took it for a spin and it definitely found some of the icy roads a bit difficult.

The low cost seems to be because it is the bare version of the car. It has no extras, even the doors aren't powered. For something to go from point A to point B, it may be useful, but I need something more than what it has.

Appreciate the support.
 

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If I were you, I'd expand the search to find a 4X4 version. I have the 2016 Sport with power door locks and window, traction control, 4X4, 4 wheel disc brakes, 17" rims, Uconnect, 2.4L engine, 6-speed autostick transmission, and a few other options I've forgotten about that has handled the recent snows like only a Jeep can. The 4X4 works very well on the dirt and gravel roads I sometimes take, and it handles rather well on paved roads at highway speeds.

If you can afford to, buy new or nearly new...Jeep dealers are trying to get rid of the stock of 2016s on their lot, so you should be able to get a great enough deal. Don't forget, the Patriot is the same vehicle as the Compass, and offers the same options...usually for a few dollars less.
 

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If I were you, I'd expand the search to find a 4X4 version. I have the 2016 Sport with power door locks and window, traction control, 4X4, 4 wheel disc brakes, 17" rims, Uconnect, 2.4L engine, 6-speed autostick transmission, and a few other options I've forgotten about that has handled the recent snows like only a Jeep can. The 4X4 works very well on the dirt and gravel roads I sometimes take, and it handles rather well on paved roads at highway speeds.

If you can afford to, buy new or nearly new...Jeep dealers are trying to get rid of the stock of 2016s on their lot, so you should be able to get a great enough deal. Don't forget, the Patriot is the same vehicle as the Compass, and offers the same options...usually for a few dollars less.
No question that this is the best way to go. You'll have warranty!! You may need it as I did. Once you have 4x4 or AWD you're sold forever. They have a good 4x4 system in these. That I have seen.
 
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